5 things your Autistic Child needs to hear
This article was written with the help of my wonderful students without whom I would be a lot less educated.
Neurodivergent kids need more positive feedback. Your autistic or neurodivergent kid should be celebrated. Your Autistic kids want to hear that they make the home and your Daily lives better and aren’t a burden on their families. They should be celebrated because they are awesome. They should be celebrated because they are not celebrated. Autistic and neurodivergent children face more criticism than their Neuro typical counterparts. This means that many neurodivergent children have low self-esteem. To mitigate against this we must shower these wonderful children and compliments, praise and most importantly support.
You shouldn’t have been treated like that
Autistic children are often treated poorly by our ableist society has condoned it. As parents we must write that wrong. If a teacher is upsetting your child, support your child. If a peer teases your child, support them. Your Autistic kids want to hear that from their parents. In order for your child to feel like they deserve comfort you must demand it first. The reassurance from a parent will go very far.
Wow tell me more
Autistic kids are really cool, I can’t say that enough. They have really cool interests that they are passionate about and are keen to share with their family and their friends. My students tell me that often their parents don’t show an interest in what they care about. Your Autistic kids want to hear that their interests are valid. Show an interest in your children by showing an interest in what they’re interested in. This might be their Minecraft game or their tea towel collection. It is a magical way to connect with an Autistic child by engaging in their special interest.
You’re experience can be hard
Your experience can be hard, but it doesn’t have to be and it won’t always be. Being Neurodivergent means that you exist in a world that hasn’t been built with your needs in mind. This means you will fight more battles on a daily basis to advocate for yourself and will have to create solutions to problems that others couldn’t even imagine. This is exhausting and we should validate that experience in our Autistic children. In saying that, it’s important not to present Neuro diversity as a trouble or negative thing. It is part of your identity it is part of your armor.
What do you want?
Autistic children are not asked what they want, or often even what they need. They then grow not to trust their instincts, they feel that everyone else knows better than them. Ask your children what they want, do you like your school? Is your teacher treating you well? Do you want this broccoli? Do you want to go back to that dance class? Teaching them to trust themselves will help them feel confident in self advocating for their needs and will help them understand their boundaries and their own communication.